The Power of Plants with Jessica Murnane

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When it comes to my personal eating style, I follow the ‘everything in moderation’ theory. That is, of course, with the exception of a few dessert binges along the way. The old adage, ‘you are what you eat,’ seems to prove itself as we continue to learn more about diet’s direct affect on health, something no one knows better than Jessica Murnane.

As the founder of, OnePartPlant, Ms. Murnane has teamed up with some of the best restaurants in town to ensure their menus boast at least one plant-based dish, making it easy for all types of food-lovers to enjoy great meals together. Her partners include Lula Café, Floriole, Sable, RM Champagne Salon, Nightwood, David Burke Primehouse, The Bristol and Trencherman. According to her, “Eating a plant-based diet can change more than just your physical appearance. It makes your thoughts clearer; you’re more alert and just an overall happier person. When you feel good, when you feel your best, it affects everything in your life. “

It all started one day when Ms. Murnane wasn’t feeling well; she opted for a plant-based diet at the suggestion of a friend. Months later she was pain-free, and went on to receive a certification in plant-based nutrition from New York’s T. Colin Campbell Foundation. On her website, www.onepartplant.com, she offers new recipes, cooking how-tos and health advice. “I love creating recipes that are approachable and easy to make,” says Ms. Murnane. “You won’t stick with a new way of eating if it’s hard to do.”

But how does someone like me make such a drastic change? “When changing your diet, it’s important to keep the foods you love – but with minor tweaks,” Ms. Murnane says. “Swap out your regular milk for almond milk in your mashed potatoes. Use raw honey as a sweetener instead of the fake kind.” And if these simple swaps haven’t convinced you, I promise her recipe for almond butter blueberry cookies will make you a convert. Enjoy and let me know what you think!

Almond Butter Blueberry Cookies

Almond Butter Blueberry Cookies

1 1/2 cup brown rice flour (or teff flour)

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp sea salt

1 cup crunchy almond butter

1 cup real maple syrup

1 cup blueberries (frozen is fine)

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix flour, baking soda and salt.
  3. In a large bowl, mix almond butter and maple syrup.
  4. Pour flour mixture into your almond butter mixture. Stir until combined.
  5. Gently fold blueberries into the mix, trying your best not to squish them.
  6. Scoop spoonfuls of batter onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet.
  7. Bake for 12-14 minutes. They should still be a little soft when removed from the oven.

Tips: 

I like Bob’s Redmill flours, which you can find at most bigger grocery stores and at Whole Foods. If you have a hard time tracking it down, Vitacost has a great selection of flours.

If you don’t have time to let your blueberries defrost on their own, just place the amount you need in a colander under hot water until they’re thawed out. Make sure to shake out all the extra water before placing in your batter.

This is a great basic cookie recipe to have fun with – experiment with fruits, nuts and chocolate to make this recipe your own.

 

Sarah Levy

About Sarah Levy Imberman

Sarah Levy delighted millions as the owner and proprietor of Sarah's Pastries & Candies, one of Chicago's most popular confectionaries since its opening in 2004. A graduate of Northwestern University and the French Pastry School, Ms. Levy is the author of Sweetness: Delicious Baked Treats for Every Occasion and the winner of the Food Network Challenge. She’s been featured in USA TodayBetter Homes and Gardens and the Chicago Tribune, among many others. Ms. Levy's now doing business as S. Levy Foods, and is a leader in the airport food concession business.